Kindergarten Behavior Plan
Students in Kindergarten are often thrilled to be starting school and eager to obey teachers. This does not make the Kindergarten behavior plan any less important. In fact, starting at the very beginning of the school years students should be introduced to the rewards and consequences of a behavior plan.
Michelle Estes, a Kindergarten teacher in Prince George’s County Public Schools, has created an excellent behavior plan that expects students to obey, rewards them for having a great day and follows through with consequences for not following the rules.
In the posted classroom rules, students are explicitly told what behavior is expected from them. The simple rhyming pattern of the rules helps the young students to remember them. Notice that the rules are stated in a positive, instead of a negative, as all rules should be. Class rules should be telling students what to do instead of what not to do.
“We raise our hands to speak
We work quietly at our seats.
We use voices soft and sweet.
We are careful with our hands and feet.
We are helpful, friendly, and fair.
We take turns and always share.”
Ms. Estes has chosen to use six rules for her Kindergarten students. This works well for her class because of the rhythm and rhyme of the rules together that helps students remember. If teachers choose to simply list rules, they should be kept to a maximum of 3-4 for Kindergarten students.
Students are also told the exact rewards and consequences they will receive for their behavior. Ms. Estes clearly explains where students start each day, what happens when they do not follow the rules and what happens if they are following the rules. She has color coded her behavior system, an excellent way to help young students visualize their behavior.
All students start on Blue at the start of the day.
Green: warning and lose one skittle.
Yellow: 5 minutes in the “calm down corner” and lose two skittles.
Red: note or phone call home and lose all 3 skittles.
Purple: Award badge, receive 4 skittles.
The students are also told what each color stands for in kid friendly language. Students will be able to quickly see that they are having an:
a great day,
a good day,
an ok day and
not a good day.
What is especially important to point out here is the fact that no where does it say that the students are having a bad day. This helps to keep students focused on improving behavior.